Princess Madeleine's Upcoming Wedding

Princess Madeleine’s wedding will quickly be upon us – as of this writing it is 28 days away- so now is a good time to recap what we know so far.

For those of us just joining the party, Madeleine is the second daughter of King Carl Gustav and Queen Silvia of Sweden. Her full title is Her Royal Highness Princess Madeleine of Sweden, Duchess of Hälsingland and Gästrikland.

She was born on June 10, 1982 just two weeks before Prince William. Naturally then there were some hopeful royal matchmakers, but I don’t think she and William have ever actually met, so that didn’t work out.

Cut to Madeleine announcing her engagement to in the summer of 2009 to this fellow:

Scanpix
Scanpix

We won’t even bother naming him here. Suffice to say he was a bit of a cad, so that ended in the spring of 2010. Around that time, Madeleine moved to New York City where she began to work for the World Childhood Foundation, which had been co-founded by the Queen.

It was in the city that she met this guy, Mr. Ryan O’Neill, and they announced their engagement back in the fall of 2012. Our post on that can be found here.

Copyright Kungahuset.se Patrick Demarchelier
Copyright Kungahuset.se Patrick Demarchelier

On to the wedding! Here’s what we know so far.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Everything will kick off on the evening of Friday June 7th, when the King and Queen will host a dinner for wedding guests not at a palace, but at the five star Grand Hotel in Stockholm. Click here to check out the hotel’s website yourself.

This goes to show that this is more of a low-key event than the totally grand affair that took place for Madeleine’s older sister Crown Princess Victoria. As the heir to the throne, her wedding was more of a state event, and the evening before the wedding ceremony guests were treated to a black tie dinner and lavish concert.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Another indication that this is intended to be a slightly more low-key affair is that the wedding ceremony will be held in the Royal Chapel at the Royal Palace of Stockholm at 4pm in the afternoon while Crown Princess Victoria’s ceremony was held at Stockholm Cathedral. It’s nice that they can both have distinct and different weddings.
 
This is the beautiful palace here. It is home to the official offices of the Royal Family;
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 There will still be plenty of grand royal fanfare. For example, once the ceremony concludes a 21-gun salute will be fired at five second intervals from Skeppsholmen, one of the islands of Stockholm.

The bride and groom will then be taken by horse and carriage from the Royal Palace of Stockholm to Riddarholmen, another island of central Stockholm. The couple along with their wedding guests will then travel by boat to the dinner venue, Drottningholm Palace alongside a parade of Swedish Armed Forces.

Swedish public service broadcaster Sveriges television has been named the official host broadcaster at the wedding between Princess Madeleine and Mr. Christopher O’Neill. The wedding will take place at 4 p.m. CET in the Royal Chapel at the Royal Palace. Fingers crossed it is also streamed live on the internet.

Amazingly, Crown Princess Victoria’s wedding and dinner banquet was broadcast in it’s entirety. Like, you could watch the royals at their tables as dinner was served. Talk about being a fly on the wall!

Wedding party

The wedding party is still unknown. We know that Princess Madeleine has been a bridesmaid at least once, when she attended her friend Natalia Rosta in August of 2011, so perhaps Natalia will be in the wedding party. For more info on Madeleine the bridesmaid, our post on Royal Bridesmaids can be found here.

Too bad little Princess Estelle is too young to be a flower girl! After all, she only just celebrated her first birthday on February 23. So cute:

Copyright Kungahuset.se Kate Gabor
Copyright Kungahuset.se Kate Gabor

Dress Speculation

We can again look to Princess Victoria’s wedding for ideas. She chose Swedish designer Par Engshen, who created this beautiful gown:

Copyright Kungahuset.se
Copyright Kungahuset.se

It would not be a huge surprise if Madeleine followed suit, particularly since she has worn his designs before. However, since Madeleine is marrying an American perhaps she’d be ok to choose an American designer. Vera Wang or Monique L’hullier, anyone?

Tiara Speculation

Now, what tiara will Madeleine wear? One solid idea is that she will follow tradition and wear the Cameo Tiara that Victoria, Queen Silvia, Princess Birgitta, and Princess Desiree all wore on their wedding days.

-Mad Hattery
Mad Hattery

This is one heck of a piece and dates back to Empress Josephine, whose husband Napolean(!) gave this tiara as a gift in 1809. I’d be truly surprised if Madeleine chose to keep this tradition going. It’s so historic and meaningful, but just not pretty. And I think Madeleine will go for pretty.

Here’s my guess for her wedding tiara:

Copyright Kungahuset.se
Copyright Kungahuset.se

This tiara is known as the Modern Fringe Tiara and can be worn both as a necklace and a tiara. It’s convertible! Also, there is speculation that this piece was a ten year anniversary gift from the king to Queen Silvia so there is meaning there . Plus, Madeleine uses this tiara regularly. Perhaps she’ll wear the cameo bracelet in homage to the tradition.

Any other guesses?

A title for the Groom?

Upon Madeleine’s first engagement, it was announced that her husband would take on the title Duke of of Hälsingland and Gästrikland. I’m guessing the same will go for Chris, though the Palace has yet to announce that one way or another.

Please share your thoughts with us!

PS: The most up to date details on the Swedish Royal Wedding can be found on the official website here.

A Revamped Royal Post

Hello, Royal Post Readers!

Thank you so much for sticking with us as we went on an unexpected hiatus as life got a little busy. As you can see, we’re back now with a new and improved blog format and plan to be on a regular publishing schedule going forward. We hope The Royal Post is now easier to navigate. As we go along we will continue to make improvements, so any suggestions or ideas are always welcome!

One bummer that came from our new format is that the ‘About’ page went into hiding and changing that has proven to be no easy feat. So, I figured I’d just write a post to re-introduce ourselves properly. It’s time to get a bit more personal!

As you may already know, we Royal Posters are Canadian twin sisters who have loved all things royal since the very early ‘8o’s.  No doubt our mum sparked this love when she pasted a picture of Prince William into our baby books since we were born less than a month apart. We now offer you some visual proof that this began loooong before the Copy Kate phenomenon.

These portraits of yours truly were taken in 1987.

Royal Poster #1

Here we have Royal Poster #1 in her special Christmas party frock:

Copyright The Royal Post

Copyright The Royal Post

And of course this is Lady Diana Spencer looking lovely in one of her many engagement portraits. This one was taken in 1981 at Highgrove, Prince Charles’ country estate.

-Getty Images

Getty Images

Note the similarity of fabrics, shade of green, and puffy sleeves. Heck, even the haircuts are similar! And, in lieu of a diamond necklace, Royal Poster #1 has a shiny silver and lace clown collar. Perfect.

Royal Poster #2

Next up is Royal Poster #2 (that’s me) in a red velvet party dress. As I recall, my favourite part of the dress was the rhinestone (but of course I considered it a diamond) button at the center of the lace collar. If you look really close you can see it:

Copyright The Royal Post

Clearly I was inspired by Princess Diana’s March of 1982 David Sassoon gown and stunning necklace…

Corbis

Corbis

…though perhaps this collar is more reminiscent of mine. Diana wore this patriotic red and white number during a state visit to Canada in 1986:

Star Editions
Star Editions

For the time being, neither one of us is currently living back home in Canada (one of us in Los Angeles and the other lives in London, England) but we get to share our royal hobby thanks to this blog. We’re so glad you are a part of it.

This post is part of a brave blogging link-up that’s part of Liv Lane’s How To Build a Blog You Truly Love ecourse. As a participant, I was challenged to step outside my comfort zone and share something with you that felt especially brave. Getting a bit more personal and sharing pictures from the ’80s fits the bill for me!! If you like, you can see what others in the course have written by clicking here.

Royalty at the Kentucky Derby

Yesterday marked the 139th Kentucky Derby and a horse named Orb claimed the top prize after a muddy and spirited race. Here’s a quick look at my Derby festivities:

photoWatching it all go down got me thinking about what royals have attended over the years, so I did a bit of a digging! Let’s take a look.

Prince Rainier of Monaco in 1963

This photograph was taken at The Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia in April 1963, shortly before Prince Rainier made his way to Lexington where he watched a horse named Chateaugay win the Race for the Roses.

The West Virginia Encyclopedia
The West Virginia Encyclopedia

They all look ever so chic. It seems that Princess Grace and Albert and Caroline were visiting with Grace’s family in Philadelphia while the Prince enjoyed the Derby solo. This must explain why photos of the Prince in the stands are hard to come by…naturally, if Grace had been there there would have been several iconic shots.

Princess Margaret in 1974

Just under ten years later, Princess Margaret and her then husband the Earl of Snowdon paid a visit to the Derby. Margaret is pictured below awarding prizes and the Earl is in the dark suit to the right of the photograph.

Via The International Museum of the Horse
Via The International Museum of the Horse

This trip was part of a larger State Visit to Canada and the United States for the couple. It also included a stop in Winnipeg, where she celebrated the city’s centennial and handed out citizenship certificates to new Canadians, and New York City, where she dined with dignitaries at the Waldorf Astoria.

Prince Albert of Monaco in 2002

Prince Albert seems to have made up for his missed trip in 1963 by attending the Derby in 2002.

Hello Magazine
Hello Magazine

Yeah, that’s far from an awesome photo, but it’s all that could be found. Seriously! So, in lieu of a great photo, I give you this bit of trivia:

Prince Albert claims to be the only Prince out there to have visited all 50 of the United States. Yeah, that’s right.

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip in 2007

In more recent memory, Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip were guests of honor at the Derby in 2007 during a State Visit to the USA. This must have been a natural choice for the trip since the Queen has had a life long love of horses and horse racing.

Reuters
Reuters

During her visit, she walked through the trophy room to admire the prizes:

QueenDerby_thumb

Fortunately for us, this stop has also been immortalized in the 2007 documentary ‘The Royal Family At Work.’ I recall there was quite a kerfuffle around making sure they got the right photos of the Queen at the Derby…it was a case of making it happen without annoying her. As I recall in the end they were only quasi-successful.

After the race, the Queen made a bit of a covert trip and snuck out of a side entrance. Here is some coverage of the event from a local news station.

Princess Haya & Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum (Prime Minister of Dubai and Vice President of the United Arab Emirates) in 2009

Via PA, taken at Ascot 2010
Via PA, taken at Ascot 2010
Princess Haya of Jordan is the Sheikh’s second wife and a very successful equestrian. Amidst her many other accomplishments, we discussed how she is a former Olympian in a past post which can be found here.
For his part, the Sheikh is a major player in the world of horse racing and breeding. According to NBC Sports, he has said that
“A love for horses runs in my blood,” Sheikh Mohammed has said. “Don’t forget that horses have been bred for centuries by Arabic tribes, they were used for hunting and fighting and they symbolize our history. Horse riding is more than merely sitting on a horse’s back. It is nobility and chivalry.”
Upstart Business Journal
Upstart Business Journal
Gainsborough Farms in Kentucky is one of the many stables he owns, and in 2009 he and Princess Haya attended the race to see two of his horses, Regal Ransom and Desert Party, take to the field.
A photo of the couple at that event are hard to come by, but one can be seen here. The Princess is standing behind the Sheikh.
In the end Regal Ransom came in 10th and Desert Party placed 19th, so his desire to win the Kentucky Derby continues.

Maybe next year?

The Abdication, Investiture & River Pageant

Well, that was fun.

Starting from the top, let’s recap yesterday’s events beginning with the abdication which took place yesterday morning. Queen Beatrix officially passed over the reigns by signing the Act of Abdication, at which point her title changed to Her Royal Highness Princess Beatrix of the Netherlands.

Here’s Willem-Alexander signing next:

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands passes the act of abdication to her son Crown Prince Willem-Alexander next to his wife Crown Princess Maxima during a ceremony at the Royal Palace in AmsterdamImmediately afterwards, the trio headed out to the balcony to acknowledge the crowds. I love this little moment here. They seem like such a warm family, and like Princess Beatrix has every faith in these two:

Getty Images

After a short while, Princess Beatrix left and out came the new Princess of Orange (Princess Amalia) along with her sisters Princess Alexia and Princess Ariane. This was the first set of adorable matching outfits they were during the day. And check out the oranges in the garland – nice touch!

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As a quick little sidebar, here we have photo of the then Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret with their parents at King George VI’s coronation. Ever so much more formal but still adorable:

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The Investiture!

The formal investiture of the new King came next, and the guests arrived looking ever so smart. Here are a few observations.

Royal Guests with Dutch Orders

A wonderful royal tradition is that for events like this, you bring the highest order of merit with you that you have received from the country you are visiting. It is worn as a mark of respect, so naturally there were several orange sashes on display.

Prince Charles

Prince Charles followed this traditions is shown here arriving wearing the Order of the Crown, which is awarded to “foreigners who have rendered special service to the Dutch King or his House.”

I have been debating whether Camilla is wearing a Dutch order as well, but I’m thinking is the Order of the Victorian Cross. There is no record of her having received a Dutch Order as of yet. Does anyone disagree?

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While we’re on the subject of Prince Charles, how strange must it be to be a mere ten years younger than the Queen who is abdicating? Plus, he attended Beatrix’s investiture 33 years ago as the Prince of Wales. I really think the Dutch have a smart abdication situation going here. Perhaps Prince William will agree when it is his turn.

Crown Princess Mathilde and Crown Prince Philippe of Belgium

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Princess Mathilde and Prince Philippe both showed up in the Order of Orange-Nassau. This order is intended for those who have “earned special merits for society.”

Mathilde also went for a bold hat choice, but I like it. And the orange sash and the dress work! Not always an easy thing to co-ordinate, as you can imagine.

Crown Princess Mette-Marit and Crown Prince Haakon of Norway:

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Mette-Marit also has the Grand Cross of Orange-Nassau and Haakon has the Grand Cross with Swords of the Order of Orange Nassau.

I know Mette-Marit’s dress has been getting some criticism for looking like wall paper and her hair ornament for looking like a hair net, but I like ’em!

Prince Felipe of Spain

Prince Felipe is in the Dutch Order club, too. It must have been granted to him during a state visit before Princess Letizia’s time since she doesn’t have one yet.

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Some other Royal Guests:

I had such high hopes for Mary after last night’s gorgeous dress. What happened here? It’s very ’70’s hippy dippy and her sash for the Order of the Elephant just makes it all too busy.  If we didn’t have all the flowers going on, it might be ok.

Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark arrive for a religious ceremony at Nieuwe Kerk church in Amsterdam

I suppose Victoria doesn’t care that whoever sits behind her won’t be able to see a darn thing. She does look lovely, though:

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The Ceremony

A great pic of some of the royal guests. Princess Masako made it! And her husband Crown Prince Naruhito is shown wearing the Grand Cross of the Order of the Crown of the Netherlands, so he’s in the club, too.

article-2317157-198E51FC000005DC-261_964x628-1What’s with the stink face, Albert? And pssst…see? We don’t even get a glimpse of the poor guest behind Victoria’s hat.

The King and Queen of the Netherlands

They certainly looked regal and did their jobs well.

0,,16781731_303,00Maxima opted for a blue gown instead of orange, and who would blame her when you have the Mellerio Sapphire Tiara is in the vault? This is the first time she has publicly worn this piece. It seems it’s on reserve for Queens only.

Getty Images

-EPA

I just LOVE the Maxima’s whole ensemble. The sash for the Order of the Netherlands Lion looks divine tucked under the little belt. The cape is so classy, and the perfect Queenly accompaniment to King Willem-Alexander’s ermine cape. Check it out in action here:

Dutch King Willem-Alexander and his wife Queen Maxima leave Nieuwe Kerk church after the religious crowning ceremony in Amsterdam

And here we have the other ladies in blue:

rincess Beatrix and her granddaughters in Nieuwe Kerk Photo © ANP
Princess Beatrix and her granddaughters in Nieuwe Kerk
Photo © ANP

Afterwards, there was a Royal Group Photo for the history books:

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Who gets to stand where is so fascinating to me. Is the pride of those on the outskirts wounded or are they just happy to be there? Notably, Prince Charles got a spot of honour next to Queen Maxima!

The River Pageant

And then it was time for another change of clothes and off to the river:

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It all got a thumbs up from Maxima:

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What wins it all for me is the capes. OMG the capes. It’s like they are about to go to traipsing into the hills:

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Happiness! Princess Mette-Marit got on the cape bandwagon, too:

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And so did Princess Beatrix:

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To end, Princess Mary showed up in a festive red, much improved from earlier in the day:

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So? Was that fun or what? Would love to hear your thoughts!